In recounting the intellectual foundation of any subject, one should bear in mind that most advanced thought can be traced to the ancient Greeks. This claim especially applies to systems analysis. Although they did not possess the formal tools of systems analysis, many Greek thinkers personified its essential quality: Socrates, in particular, persistently asked questions and relentlessly questioned assertions. However else systems analysis is defined, question-raising and finding rational answers to at least some of them is what the subject is about. Now this is not new as a feature of decisionmaking. But what was new--and what came to be called systems analysis during the lifetime of many of us--was that high-level government policymakers at key junctures revealed themselves to be the question-raisers. However, to ask relevant questions so as to evoke useful answers is neither simple or easy. Indeed, when a senior government policymaker asks a tough question, a simple or straightforward answer is seldom forthcoming. This is because, usually, the equation must be directed to, and answered by, a bureaucracy.